Napa Valley College head men’s basketball coach Steve Ball said he has received commitments from five players, including Brandon Radu of Redwood High School-Larkspur, for the 2019-2020 season.
Radu, a 6-foot-4 small forward, averaged 12.1 points, 3.8 rebounds, 1.8 steals and 1.4 assists per game for Redwood (24-9 overall, 13-3 Marin County Athletic League) this past season.
Redwood advanced to the playoffs after finishing in second place in the MCAL.
The Giants went 1-1 in the MCAL playoffs, losing to Branson-Ross in the finals (41-40).
They were 2-1 in the CIF North Coast Section Division 2 playoffs, with wins over Vallejo (64-53) and San Lorenzo (58-52) and a loss to Bishop O’Dowd-Oakland (56-46).
Redwood was 1-1 in the CIF State Division III playoffs. The Giants beat Santa Cruz (55-38) and lost to Monterey (51-48).
“I’m really excited about Brandon,” Ball said last week. “He has a really high basketball IQ. I think his ceiling is probably not even going to be with us. Once he’s done with us, he’ll still continue to progress. That’s the potential that he has.
“We look for Brandon to stretch the floor, to play multiple spots with his length, to do some matchup zone stuff because of his versatility. He moves really well without the ball. He fits right in with Braxton Adderly and Tomas Gomez-Espana at the guard spots. He’ll complement them well.”
Gio Magdaleno of Ferndale, Shakir Howard of Fairfield, Sonny Swift-Watson of Buckingham Charter-Vacaville, and Mitch Hippauf of Napa High have also committed to play for Napa Valley, which was 5-23 overall, 3-13 in the Bay Valley Conference this past season.
The Storm finished eighth in the nine-team conference.
Magdaleno played point guard and shooting guard for Ferndale (9-15 overall, 0-6 Humboldt-Del Norte-Little 4 League). Magdaleno was named All Humboldt-Del Norte League Little 4 Conference as a junior and was honorable mention this year.
“Gio is a consummate gym rat. He loves to be in a gym and he’s excited about being a member of the Storm,” said Ball. “He sees the floor well and he shoots the ball from deep pretty well, too. We’re looking forward to working with him.”
The 6-3 Howard played a wing position for Fairfield (6-21 overall, 3-7 Monticello Empire League).
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“Shakir Howard is a defender who has great instincts for the basketball and is very athletic,” said Ball. “He’s got the body to develop into a very good wing, defensively, especially.”
Buckingham Charter was 10-13 overall, 9-5 in the Sacramento Metropolitan Athletic League.
Hippauf, a 2018 Napa High graduate, will also play for the Storm, Ball said.
Hippauf was among the finalists for Defensive Player of the Year on the 2017-18 All-Napa County team.
“Having Mitch Hippauf is going to be huge,” said Ball. “He’s really progressed. He’s gotten stronger.”
Honors for Jalen Green
Jalen Green, a 6-foot-4 junior guard, was named to the 41st annual Cal-Hi Sports all-state boys basketball team for San Joaquin Memorial-Fresno.
Green is on the elite-first team overall.
Green was also named to the first team open/Division I.
Green, who is transferring to Prolific Prep Academy of Napa, averaged 31.1 points, 7.8 rebounds and 3.6 assists per game this past season.
Green is San Joaquin Memorial’s all-time leading scorer with 2,291 career points.
San Joaquin Memorial went 22-11 this past season and won the CIF Central Section title, beating San Luis Obispo in the finals, 87-44.
San Joaquin Memorial went 1-1 in the CIF Division I Championships, beating Dublin, 95-80, and losing to Bishop O’Dowd-Oakland, 66-61.